As always Philippa Gregory has not let me down. The Last Tudor follows the life of Jane Grey and her sisters. As we all know Jane was only queen for nine days before Mary Tudor fought for the throne and won. However, the story does not end there. In parts two and three we follow the lives of her sisters Katherine and Mary. But will these sisters follow Jane’s footsteps to the scaffold? Let me know your thoughts on The Last Tudor.
This week I had another article in mind to close out this month’s discussion on teen dating violence. However, while researching information for the article I came across a YouTube video that made me change today’s topic. The documentary is based on a true story and is almost an hour long. I can only come up with one flaw for this documentary. It has a narrator. In my opinion, it doesn’t need the narrator. In fact, she’s a bit irritating. But if you can ignore that, the documentary, though hard to watch, is a must see. As always please feel free to leave your comments!
Love Is Not Abuse is an app for parents to learn more about teen dating violence. The app was created by Liz Claiborne, Inc and it can be found in the Apple store. And it’s free! The app gives you a twenty-four trial of what controlling and abusive behavior is like. The user will receive text messages, emails, and phone calls. The pretend boyfriend/girlfriend on the other end will threaten the user with different scenarios if they do not agree to their request. For example, if the pretend boyfriend/girlfriend of the user asks them to unfriend someone Facebook and the user doesn’t, the pretend boyfriend/girlfriend will make threats. The app also includes tips and information on teen dating abuse. Videos are available to teach parents about abuse methods that violate privacy. Below is the link to the YouTube video that shows you how all this works.
Surprisingly, some people criticize the app for being unrealistic and too general. I believe any app that helps a parent connect with and protect their teen is greatly needed. To say this app is unrealistic is a bit of a stretch. The quickest way for a teen to be controlled is through social media. Teens are glued to their phones twenty-four hours a day; constant phone calls and text messages is the number one option to control their significant others. We must do something to protect our children and we need all open paths to do it.
We all know how difficult it is to be a teenager. Everything seems life shattering. Not making the team, not getting the lead in a play, and not being asked out by the most popular person in school. All these things can seem as if the world is coming to an end. But what about the teen that facing a true life altering ordeal. There is a growing number of teens in abusive relationships. Approximately 9% of teens are a victim of physical violence from their partner every year. Teen dating violence is defined as the mental, emotional, physical and sexual abuse that occurs within a romantic relationship. Examples of teen dating violence:
• Emotional abuse – this includes your mate talking down to you; hurting your feelings.
• Verbal abuse – this includes your mate yelling, threatening, or mocking you.
• Controlling behavior – your mate calling you repeatedly, telling you who you can talk to or hang out with, going through your phone without your permission, and most importantly forcing you into a sexual situation when you’re not ready.0
Most teens may not realize they’re in an abusive relationship. Especially, boys. Most teens–both boys and girls–thought it was okay for girls to hit boys. It is not! Starting as early as eleven years old, parents should have the conversation with their teens about abuse. And please understand that eleven years old is not too young to have this discussion. Pre-teens are at the very threshold of learning to interact on a whole other level with the opposite sex. In this day and age, dating begins quite early, even if parents have strict rules about it. And we all know how quickly kids learn these days.
If you are worried about your teen being in an abusive relationship, here are some signs to look for:
• Does your child show physical signs of abuse?
• Has his or her grades began to fall, or have they dropped out completely?
• Have they changed their personal style (dress, hair, makeup, if allowed, etc.)?
• Has their confidence taken a dive?
• Have they quit their normal routine of activities (after school or otherwise)?
• Are they using drugs or drinking alcohol?
• Are they having mood swings or emotional breakdowns?
• Have they started isolating themselves from family and friends?
• Do they apologize for their significant other’s angry outbursts or awkward behavior?
• Do they seem overly worried about upsetting their significant other?
• Are they suffering from sudden weight loss, depression, anxiety, or suicide?
If any of these signs stick out to you, please talk to your teen. They need someone in their corner. Please talk them today!
Jane Grey was queen of England for nine days. Her father and his allies crowned her instead of the dead king’s half sister Mary Tudor, who quickly mustered an army, claimed her throne, and locked Jane in the Tower of London. When Jane refused to betray her Protestant faith, Mary sent her to the executioner’s block, where Jane transformed her father’s greedy power grab into tragic martyrdom.
“Learn you to die,” was the advice Jane wrote to her younger sister Katherine, who has no intention of dying. She intends to enjoy her beauty and her youth and fall in love. But she is heir to the insecure and infertile Queen Mary and then to her half sister, Queen Elizabeth, who will never allow Katherine to marry and produce a Tudor son. When Katherine’s pregnancy betrays her secret marriage, she faces imprisonment in the Tower, only yards from her sister’s scaffold.
“Farewell, my sister,” writes Katherine to the youngest Grey sister, Mary. A beautiful dwarf, disregarded by the court, Mary keeps family secrets, especially her own, while avoiding Elizabeth’s suspicious glare. After seeing her sisters defy their queens, Mary is acutely aware of her own danger but determined to command her own life. What will happen when the last Tudor defies her ruthless and unforgiving Queen Elizabeth?